Long Covid: how to claim Personal Independence Payment

globe with a mask and text coronavirus

According to the gov.uk website, approximately one in 10 people with coronavirus continues to experience symptoms beyond 12 weeks. Some of these long Covid symptoms are so bad that they find it difficult to go back to work.

The added stress of juggling multiple specialist appointments and tests doesn’t make it any easier, especially on finances. If you’re suffering from long Covid, you can claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP) to ease the pressure on your finances. Here’s what you need to know.


What is long Covid?

Long Covid is the continuation of COVID-19 symptoms beyond 5 or 12 weeks after the first infection. The National Institute for Health Research highlights that long Covid may also be referred to as post-Covid syndrome. You may also come across the phrases chronic Covid or post-acute COVID-19.

Research from the Department of Health and Social Care highlights that there are more than 55 different long-term symptoms. However, the most common indicators of long COVID include a cough, fatigue, ‘brain fog’ or cognitive impairment, organ damage, headaches and breathlessness.

Initially, little was known about long covid. As a result, the government pledged £18.5 million to fund research projects geared towards understanding the causes, symptoms and treatment of the condition. The latest findings from the Imperial College London indicate that patterns of rogue antibodies have been found in the blood of some long Covid patients. This could be good news as it might soon be possible to test for the condition.

Can you claim PIP for long Covid?

PIP caters to some of the extra costs you incur from a long-term physical or mental health problem or disability.

Whether you can claim PIP for long Covid isn’t very clear, probably because not much is known about the condition. One of the eligibility criteria for claiming PIP is that you must have a physical or mental health problem or disability. You must have had difficulties with daily living or getting around for three months.

Some long Covid symptoms can be so severe that they meet the PIP eligibility criteria. If you fall into this category, then you could be eligible to claim PIP. You could also be suffering from long Covid but have symptoms that don’t meet the eligibility criteria for PIP. Your PIP claim in this instance might not be approved.


How do you claim PIP for long Covid?

You can either call or send a letter to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). You can find the details you require on the gov.uk website. It’s important to note that claiming by post is likely to be slower.

After the call or sending a letter, you will receive a “How your disability affects you” form.

  • Fill out the form with the help of the attached notes
  • Return the form to the DWP within a month
  • The form will be processed
  • If more information is needed, an independent health professional will send a letter inviting you for an assessment
  • The health professional will ask questions about how your condition affects your daily life (they are also responsible for determining the level of help you can get)
  • If you are eligible, you’ll get a letter informing you whether you’ll get PIP, how much and when you’ll be paid
  • If you disagree with any decision, you can ask for a mandatory reconsideration, make an appeal or consider Universal Credit as an alternative.

The post Long Covid: how to claim Personal Independence Payment appeared first on The Motley Fool UK.

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